BERLIN — The Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra is gearing up to present the “Seven Seasons” Strings Concert.
The Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra’s Spring Series of Concerts in March, April and May, under the baton of Maestro Julien Benichou, will continue to present imaginative pairings of works and world-class soloists. Thrilling audiences at the October and December concerts, this concert will feature 15 MSO string musicians in a program called “Seven Seasons” because of the first two titled pieces.
The concert will showcase two MSO musicians — concertmaster Nicholas Currie and assistant concertmaster Dana Weiderhold.
Benichou will premiere his “Three Seasons of Chicago,” a short three-movement piece dealing with the realities of northern Illinois climate — snow, rain and road construction.
This piece will be followed by Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla’s “The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires.” Piazzolla is known as the single most important figure in the history of tango. His set of four compositions, a tribute to Vivaldi, were written between 1965 and 1970 and are an “electrifying blend of the fire and passion of traditional tango with the vast resources of modern harmony, texture and sonority.” It is music that violinists love to play.
The final piece is what some consider Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s loveliest composition, “Serenade for Strings”. In the fall of 1880, he composed simultaneously two of his most popular works: the 1812 Overture and the Serenade for Strings. While the Overture has since exploded in popularity (with help from cannons and fireworks), initially Tchaikovsky thought little of the work. The Serenade, on the other hand, was a work that came straight from his heart. The love stemmed from Tchaikovsky’s passion for Mozart, his favorite composer. He told his patroness, “I am violently in love with this work and cannot wait for it to be played.”
Both featured soloists are accomplished musicians. Canadian-born Nicolas Currie holds many titled positions in violin, being the Concertmaster of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Associate Concertmaster of Concert Artists of Baltimore, and Assistant Concertmaster of the Annapolis Symphony. He has soloed with several orchestras and his chamber music experiences include performances with the Azimuth String Quarter, the Mariner String Quartet, the Cueto Quartet, the Principles of Concert Artists Quartet, and the Melos Ensemble with Clarinetist Gervaise de Payer.
A native of Minersville, Pa., Dana Weiderhold began playing the violin at the age of seven at Woodhaven String Academy. She most frequently performs as assistant concertmaster of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra and as principal second violinist with the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra. She is concertmaster of the Anthracite Philharmonic and has performed as an orchestral musician with the Annapolis, Allentown, Pottstown, Chester County Pops, Kennett, and Delaware County Symphonies.
The Strings Concert will be performed on Sunday, March 9, at 3 p.m. at the Community Church, Racetrack Road, Ocean Pines. An optional preconcert lecture discussing the composers and compositions takes place at 2: 15 p.m.
The concert will also be held on Thursday, March 6, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at the Easton Church of God, 1009 N. Washington Street, Easton, and on Saturday, March 8, at 7:30 p.m. at the Mariner’s Bethel Church, Route 26 and Central Avenue, Ocean View, Del. Tickets are $35 for adults. A limited number of complimentary tickets are available to 18-year-olds and under; however, reservations for these tickets must be made in advance. For tickets and information, call 1-888-846-8600 or visit www.midatlanticsymphony.org where the season brochure and ticket order form can be downloaded by clicking on “Concerts – Tickets”.